Woosnam: Legends Tour return could be delayed

THE return of European Senior Tour golf to Jersey is in doubt and may have to be delayed a year, according to former world number one Ian Woosnam.

Former Ryder Cup captain Mark James is among those to have played in Jersey in the past as part of the European Senior Tour – now named the Legends Tour Picture: ROB CURRIE
Former Ryder Cup captain Mark James is among those to have played in Jersey in the past as part of the European Senior Tour – now named the Legends Tour Picture: ROB CURRIE

Last year it was announced that the Senior Tour, which is now called the Legends Tour, would be returning to La Moye Golf Club following an absence of five years.

The ICL Jersey Legends is currently still set to take place between 4-6 June in St Brelade, although ongoing restrictions brought by the pandemic appear to be a threat.

Woosnam, who has resided in Jersey for almost three decades and played an integral role in bringing the tour back to the Island, has said the event may have to be put back to 2022. And the former Masters champion, who won the old Jersey Open in 1987, is hopeful that the event will remain on the tour schedule for years to come.

Speaking to The Sport Report – founded by former JEP journalist Jonny Drury – Woosnam said: ‘I’m not 100% sure it is going to take place this year now because of Covid, it might have to be knocked back a year

‘It is great to have it back on the calendar and it is fantastic for the Island, it is one I am really looking forward to. And it is lovely to have La Moye back on the map, it is such a lovely course and it has had a lot of good work done on it.

‘It will be nice to keep it regularly on the tour. Obviously that comes through sponsorship and everything, but it’d be really good if it was a regular on the calendar. It would be great to have people coming over and making the trip over to Jersey, players love coming here to play.’

Woosnam, who is returning to the Masters in April, before taking part in senior competitions on both sides of the Atlantic, added: ‘I won’t feel any added pressure being the host at the end of the day. It is just about making the tournament successful again and attracting sponsorship.’

The 63-year-old told the JEP in 2019 that he wouldn’t be playing in the Masters again due to issues with his back and a condition he has suffered with throughout his career.

However, after successful back surgery he confirmed recently that he would be making a u-turn and this year would be returning to Augusta National, where he donned the famous green jacket back in 1991.

He explained: ‘I had issues with my back but I’ve been feeling good so I’ve decided to accept the invitation.

‘In the last three months I have been feeling pretty good and I have seen a big difference.

‘I’ve been stronger. I’ll never be out of pain fully with the ankylosing spondylitis but it is the best I have felt in a very, very long time so I have decided to play. It was tough to watch last year and it wasn’t really the same with how soft and wet it was.

‘It will be different this year, like it usually is. I’m going to go there a week before and have a few rounds and see how I manage.

‘I’m not taking anyone’s spot and if I do have to pull out, I have to pull out, but we will see how it goes.’

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